CRICKET ROUND-UP: St Ives Town beat the weather for a dramatic win at Castor & Ailsworth
- Credit: Archant
EYES went to the heavens in the TuckerGardner Premier League at the weekend and memories of last season’s wash-out came flooding back.
After three weekends without rain, two Division One games were abandoned on Saturday with one of the casualties Godmanchester Town’s match at home to Wisbech Town, but the real drama was at St Ives Town’s rain-interrupted match at Castor & Ailsworth, who are still without a win this time around.
Batting first, St Ives Town only managed a knock of 88 but ended up with a one-run victory courtesy of some excellent bowling from Ryan Withers and, at the death, Chris Muggleton.
The captain, Bevis Moynan, told The Hunts Post: “It was a bit of a mad game of cricket really, the pitch at Castor was bowler friendly and we thought early on that maybe 100 would be enough to win it – but we just fell short of that.”
Matthew Durrant put on 34 of their 88 runs but only Withers (13) and Moynan (11) joined him in double-figures. The Castor batsmen took quite an aggressive stance and it got quite tight as they approached their target.
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“With 18 runs to go they had three wickets left,” said Moynan. “And then they needed just three with two wickets left. It went right down to the wire.”
Rob Smith stumped Castor’s last but-one-batsman, Will Jex (26), from a delivery by spin bowler Withers (2-9) – and St Ives’ Australian Muggleton (3-11) did for Neil Wright for zilch. The result leaves St Ives fifth with two wins and two losses from their four games.
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“We’re quite happy with the way the season is progressing,” said Moynan. “Our batting is a bit longer at the tail after losing a few good players in the break, but our bowling attack is as good as anyone in this league.”
Meanwhile, the peculiarities of the scoring system played into leaders Godmanchester Town’s hands with the team picking 13 points from a maximum 20 without even swinging a bat in anger.
Twice the players had to leave the field during the Wisbech innings and tea was taken early – but when the third interruption came the visitors declared their innings in a bid to force a result – but that third downpour had done enough damage to ensure that the two captains had no choice but to agree to the abandonment.
“We really wanted to play on,” said the captain, Matt Pateman. “We wanted to bat – but ironically, we were better off not playing on because we could have only picked up seven more points by winning, but we could have lost eight of the 13 by losing.”
Goddy had restricted their opponents to 131-9 but between the showers batting was never easy and the Godmanchester spinners exploited the conditions well.
Winning the toss with rain promised, Pateman predictably invited Wisbech to bat and the opponents got off to an awful start, losing their first three wickets to the home pace attack for just 22 runs. Chethan William (3-34) bagged three of the later order batsmen bowling in tandem with Martin Burton (2-32), with Elliot Baldwin also picking up two of the early wickets.
Ramsey, against second-placed March Town, who Godmanchester visit next week, lost in another rain-affected game when they were restricted to 91 all out with Sam Rippington picking up 4-16 from seven overs to give them at least a fighting chance.
David Carlaw, bowling his usual tight stuff at the other end, also picked up two wickets, and there was a moment when a win was on the cards – but James Harradine and Nathan Oliver saw March home to their four-wicket win.
Wareseley continue to adjust to life in Division One with ease as their 140-run win over Nassington proved.
Simon Donald hit 95 with Ian Donald 48 on the way to 200-6. Phil Gillett recorded 5-22 as Nassington struggled to 80-6.
In Division Two, both Eaton Socon’s game at home to Histon (which never really got started) and Warboys’ game away at Fordham were abandoned.
Matthew Lavender got 5-41 as Fordham reached 152 in their innings but in reply Warboys only had five runs on the board when the heavens opened and the rain poured down.
HUNTS COUNTY BATS HUNTS LEAGUE
UNLIKE their first team, Godmanchester Town II dodged the showers to comfortably beat Barnack away for their second Hunts County Bats Division One victory of the season.
Barnack fell to 37-4 against Lawrie Marsh (2-31) and Kevin Clement (2-27) and although their later batsmen hit the ball, they lost wickets regularly to Steve Marsh (2-34) and off spinner Dan Malem (4-39).
A score of 135 never looked enough once Stuart Bryden (45) and the captain Nick Willmer (28) had put on 66 for the second wicket and man of the match Malem (21 not out) was at the crease to give his side a five-wicket win with over 20 overs to spare.
Huntingdon & District’s match against Southill Park got off to a good start with Yasir Shafiq’s 49 helping them to 149 for nine wickets in 36.3 overs. Unfortunately, that was when the rain began and the playing stopped – never to restart.
Nassington II beat Wareseley II in their reduced-overs match despite Nick Greenfield’s 57 not out.
Ramsey II also lost in Division One, to Ufford Park, with a reduced innings rescricting the play there too.
The rain came to Eaton Socon II’s rescue in their Division Two game at Cople.
Cople made 246-5 in their reduced 32 overs knock with Eaton heading for defeat at 51-1 after 24.3 overs when the game was abandoned ending in a no-result. Had another three balls been played, it would have been a defeat for Eaton.
In Division Three Upwood lost by six wickets to Jinnah and in Division Four Adam Long’s 54 couldn’t stop Little Paxton being beaten at Werrington. Also in Division Four, there was a tied match between Bretton and Ramsey III, and on Sunday, Buckden II beat Great Staughton by 45 runs in Division Five.